Fillings are a very common treatment and are needed when a tooth has a hole/decay.
Signs your child may require a filling :
- Sensitivity to temperature (hot/cold)
- Sensitivity to sweet foods (Osmotic Stimuli)
- Food impaction around a tooth
- Complaining of pain
- Avoiding Eating
There are three common types of fillings used in Kids teeth.
Composite (White Fillings)
Composite is the most common filling material used. These fillings are tooth colored and can be used for both front and back teeth. The fillings are bonded to to the tooth and provide good retention and also longevity. At times if isolation (keeping the tooth dry) is difficult other filling materials may be more suitable. For teeth that have had extensive breakdown sometimes kids crowns are required.
Glass Ionomer Cement
These fillings come in a variety of shades and strengths depending on the case. The advantage of Glass Ionomer Cements is that they perform well in cases where controlling moisture levels is difficult. They also have the added benefit of releasing fluoride into the surrounding tooth structure. The fluoride can reharden the tooth and also ward off any secondary decay. These fillings are beneficial for patients with a high caries (decay) risk.
Compomers are popular in kids teeth as they are a hybrid of the two above materials. They are strong like composite however provide the fluoride releasing properties of a glass ionomer cement. The Twinky system comes in a choice of colours that kids love.
Restoring teeth with fillings alone does not stop the disease progression – however fillings do treat the symptom of the disease. That is why caries prevention is also very important.
All fillings have a finite lifespan dependant on the material.